Saturday, 12 May 2012

Cuckoos, Whinchats and Redstart - May 12th, 2012

Today's North Westerlies didn't bode well on arrival with a quiet, cold Orme at first light. However, with a bit of patience a few bits and pieces showed. Highlight was a couple of Cuckoos flying around. One on the southern end above Bishop's Quarry and the other above the cemetery. As ever, they were flighty and elusive but did give a couple of nice flybys. Two Whinchat showed well, a male and a female, while a single male Redstart sang near in the copper mines. Best of the rest were a Yellow wagtail, Tree Pipit, 50+ Wheatear, 4 Lesser Whitethroat (including a pair copulating!), 2 Whitethraot, 5+ Willow Warblers, Blackcap and a steady passage of hirundines and 4 Swift. A single Shelduck took advantage of a bathe in the pools created by the recent deluge of rain - a few have been flying around the limestones recently, but this is the firstI've seen on the ground for a while. Chris had 5 Crossbill over, while Pete Alderson had 2 White Wagtail.
A lone Shelduck in the fields had a bathe and a preen before flying off.
This showy male Whinchat was by the dung heap and flew on and off the wall.
Same Whinchat in a more usual pose.
This beautiful male Redstart sang its head off from deep down within the Copper Mine basin.
A Cuckoo - honest! Two birds today included a typical grey bird and one that had rusty tones to it (but not quite the hepatic form).

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